For my birthday I received the new Anna Olson Back to Baking book - please note that on page 281 is a picture of her cupcake in one of the beautiful Kalasform liners that I sent her. I was hoping to get a signed copy, that would have been cool since I sent her almost $100.00 worth of liners - or even a mention... oh well we all live and learn. I am still really happy to see the picture there and just knowing that is because I sent it to her. So I had these beautiful lemons and had all kinds of ideas posted to try but my husband has been sick and really want a nice lemon meringue pie! So I remembered seeing one in the book and thought - ok here it goes I will try her recipe! I don't think I need to write out the pastry as I feel everyone has a good pie crust recipe or can find one. One thing I will note here is that when the pie is baked and comes out of the oven it is suggested to brush it with an egg white while it is hot to seal it. The filling and wonderful Italian meringue was wonderful and my meringue did not weep at all!!
So this is the recipe from Anna's book for the filling and meringue:
1 3/4 cup (435ml) water
1 1/4 (310ml) sugar
1 Tbsp (15ml) finely grated lemon zest
6 1/2 Tbsp (97.5) cornstarch
2/3 cup (160ml) fresh lemon juice
5 egg yolks (keep the whites for your meringue)
2 Tbsp (30ml) unsalted butter
Bring the water and 1 cup (250ml) of the sugar, and the lemon zest up to a full simmer in a saucepan. In a bowl whisk the remaining 1/4 cup (60ml) of the sugar with the cornstarch, then whisk in the lemon juice and egg yolks. Pour the boiling water over the lemon mixture, then pour the entire liquid mixture back into the post and whisk over medium heat until it thickens and just begins to bubble, about 4 minutes. Put the butter in a large bowl, and strain the mixture into the bowl and stir until the butter melts. Place a piece of plastic wrap over the filling and let it cool to room temperature. Then scrape the filling into the pie shell and chill just to set, about 2 hours. (Note: if you find a little bit of condensation dab it with a paper towel - it will help keep the moisture off the crust).
Take the pie out of the fridge to warm it up a little about 30 minutes before putting the meringue on it and putting it in the oven.
For the ITALIAN MERINGUE:
5 egg whites at room temperature
1 cup (250ml) sugar
1 tsp (5ml) cream of tartar
1/4 cup (60ml) water
Whip the egg white with 1/4 cup (60ml) of the sugar and the cream of tartar until the mixture holds a medium peak.
Place the remaining 3/4 cup (185 ml) of sugar plus the 1/4 cup (60ml) of water into a sauce pan and bring it to a boil. WITHOUT stirring, boil the sugar occasionally brushing the sides of the pot with water if needed, until it reaches 239 degrees F (115 C) this takes about 3 minutes - so don't leave it alone!
Carefully pour the hot sugar down the side of the bowl of whipped egg whites while whipping at medium - high speed. (do not pour the hot liquid directly onto the beater(s) whip the meringue at high speed until cooled - this takes again about 3 minutes. (note: I poured the hot sugar liquid into a measuring cup so it was easy to pour into my kitchen aid mixer bowl)
Scrape out the meringue and spread onto your filled pie and spread it around - I also lift it up from the flat part to make little peaks. Place pie onto a baking sheet and put in a 375F (190C) oven for maybe 4 minutes - watch it carefully - until it is just lightly browned.
Let it cool to room temperature before chilling. Store in fridge for up to 2 days.
So the one thing I was impressed with was the meringue! Very light and fluffy and no weeping, not overly sweet either. It reminded me of making buttercream icing and adding the hot liquid carefully into the egg whites - but that's another recipe.
My husband was very impressed with it and it did make him feel a little better :) It is like mile high pie - at first I thought wow that is a lot of meringue - but it really was very light. I hope you give this a try and let me know how you like it.